No one is beyond the touch of pain, although some feel it deeper than others. Every time we turn on the news, listen to the grief’s that others bear, mourn over losses, or simply try to live as a faithful Christian in a fallen world; we’re reminded afresh of just how difficult life is.
How does a Christian navigate life? How does a Christian glorify God? How does a Christian exemplify joy, even when life is hard?
The answer to those questions can be found in four of the sweetest words ever promised to a Believer.
I am with you….
When your heart is torn into pieces.
When the Lord hasn’t answered your questions.
When you don’t know if everything will be “okay”.
When the Lord hasn’t promises to work in the ways that you want.
When the pain threatens to overshadow your vision of the Lord.
I am with you!
Those words provide a balm for the hurting soul. Our Father has promised never to leave us, never to forsake us, always to love us, and to work all things together for our ultimate good and His glory. A lot of the time, we finite creatures don’t understand what that looks like, and cry out, “Lord, I don’t understand why you’re allowing this.”
Even though we don’t understand, we can choose to trust…
We can trust that our Father is with us.
He promises to be present.
He promises to love.
He promises grace.
He promises steadfastness.
He promises provision.
He promises never to leave you.
When you are left with more waiting and more trusting, cast yourself into my Father’s strong and loving arms. In this world, there is much suffering. But deeper than your sorrow and pain, God offers joy.
How can you fight for joy when you’re in the middle of heartbreak, uncertainty, pain and loss?
By remembering that ultimate joy is not rooted in circumstances, people, your bank account, who controls the government, or even life or death.
“Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed.” – 1 Peter 4:2-13
Trials do not surprise the Lord.
They might surprise you, but they do not catch the Lord off guard. He is sovereign over all, including the trials you’re currently facing.
In great suffering on earth there is great support from heaven. You may think now that you will not be able to bear it. But if you are Christ’s, you will be able to bear it, because He promises that He will always be with you. Meditate upon 2 Peter 1:3, “His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence.” Dear Christian, God has given you Himself, and everything you need in order to live as a successful follower of Him on this words.
Sometimes your heart will echo the words of John Piper,
With feeble fingers I cling to the ledge
Of your great grace
You’re holding on for dear life. The fight for joy is a messy one. It is not necessarily a smile on your face or skipping through a field of flowers, it is so much deeper. A smile can quickly be turned into a frown, flowers can quickly lose their beauty, and this world is fading fast.
Joy is deep.
Joy is real.
Joy is eternal.
Joy transcends circumstances.
Joy sustains through the pain.